Belle Aire students receive flu vaccine

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Health professionals are making their rounds to school campuses around the state to make sure students are vaccinated against the flu.

Children at Belle Aire Elementary got a hands-on lesson Thursday in health and science.  They lined up to get an annual flu shot.  You don't have to tell them why.

"So I can get be healthy and not be sick," said second grader Roosevelt Quinones.

A team of health professionals made getting the shot a breeze, without any tears.

"I did the nose thing. And it didn't really hurt, really tickled," said Patrixa Flores.

The best part - there was no needle involved.

"It's simply, you sniff the vaccine in and you're immunized," said Sue Catchings, CEO of Health Centers in Schools.

Louisiana Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry Mike Strain explains it's important to start with the young ones first.

"Oftentimes, influenza outbreaks begin in the schools and then what happens is when the children go home the parents, grandparents and siblings get it," said Strain. "The overall idea is to protect them and the overall community."

Commissioner Strain hopes their parents catch on.

"Get vaccinated. Now is the time. Let's vaccinate now before the flu season starts," added Strain.

LACHIP, a federal program and the OLOL Foundation are paying for the shots.  
The goal is to get 14,000 students immunized this flu season, which typically starts to peak in November.

Copyright 2012 WAFB. All rights reserved.